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  1. #1
    Down 10# and 11 inches Ginny's Avatar
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    Another Great Ride

    When ya'll go out for a ride, how many miles do you average?

    Anyway, we had another great 20 mi ride yesterday. Went to the default trail, the trail we take when we can't or don't want to think of a new route. It's the trail that gave me nightmares when I was thinking of getting a tandem. Lots of 90 degree turns onto narrow bridges, lots of kids with training wheels sitting on the trail, etc.

    Tom had taken this trail twice with our son Tom (team name=Tom2) who has no fear, so Dad Tom could 'open 'er up' so to speak. When we took the trail together, Tom had been through all the nervous parts and we had no problem at all negotiating them. I just had to relax. At the turn around point we had a good rythm going and we were taking curves with ease, something I don't do well on the single. Something to do with leaning into a wet turn and skidding on my side, maybe, who knows.

    One strange thing about this ride, the bike felt more flexible. It felt like it was a dog and I was the tail. And the bike was wagging me. Part of it is the way Tom rides, his hips sway side to side and that makes the bike do the same, but this ride was 'waggier' for lack of a better word. By the last 5 miles it was gone or had decreased dramatically so I don't know if it was me, the bike, or Toms butt swaying.

    None the less, a great ride. Tom's friend invited us to go on a ride from Boulder to Lyons and back this coming Sunday. Since we'd already made plans to go to the Ren Faire, I said we couldn't go. The kids are all psyched up for the faire and would be pretty disappointed if we didn't go.

    Hope you all enjoyed your rides this past week!
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    Ginny in Denver
    05 Specialized Sirrus Comp (Mine)
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  2. #2
    TWilkins
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    We've only had our tandem on a Multi-use trail one time, and we both hated it. It was part of a group tour across Illinois last fall, and the few miles on the trail were nerve wracking, at best. Too many tight turns, people, dogs, and kids. Give us an open road any day, and we'll be much happier.

    Your wagging feeling could have been due to a relatively low speed. You didn't indicate how fast you were were going, but there's no doubt that these big bikes handle best at a reasonable speed. I know we always feel tipsy when we're doing our usual morning half-way point turnaround in the road. It's a challenge to get the bike headed the other way without falling over or taking to the ditch.

    Glad you're having fun!
    Tracy Wilkins
    2011 Trek Madone 5.2
    2005 Burley Duet Tandem
    2009 Surly Cross-Check (Commuter)
    www.springfieldcyclist.com

  3. #3
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    Ginny - you say you live in Denver-ish - don't know exactly where that is.

    There is a ride that Lisa & I do about once/year - usually in the fall when the cottonwoods are changing. Basically, you can do a big loop around Denver on the Platte River bikeway, the Cherry Creek bikeway & the Highline Canal trail. We often start at Confluence Park (the confluence of the Platte & Cherry Creek) but you can start & end anywhere along the route. The amazing thing is that it does a 60 mile loop around Denver, there are virtually no hills & there is only 1 very short section where you ride with traffic (near the intersection of Hampden & Colorado Boulevard). We usually ride without helmets! (there, I've confessed). The scenery is varied & interesting - from the very industrial sections along the Platte to the very upscale neighborhoods in Cherry Hills. You can also ride any section of this as an out & back. There are several departures from the route where you can get food & drink. Much of the Highline Canal Trail is hard-packed dirt but you can easily ride with skinny, hard tires at 10 - 15 mph or so.

    Anyway, it's a great ride. Let me know if you want more info on the route.

  4. #4
    No Pain, No Pizza Thigh Master's Avatar
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    As I miss Boulder/Denver area muchly these days, I liked reading about you and your tandem cruising under those skies. Have you thought about taking the tandem from Lyons to Estes Park and back? Also fun would be starting in Nederland and going to Estes and back. Uber day is Boulder-Lyons-top of Trail Ridge Road and back. The cruise down trail ridge is gorgeous.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    Thigh Master - we rode from our house in Lafayette to Ward on Saturday. We've done this many times before but this was the 1st time this year. I wasn't feeling my best at the start of the ride - stomach a little uneasy, tired, etc. We got started at about 8:30. By the time we started up Left Hand Canyon, I was feeling pretty wimpy. We stopped once on the way up for a Power Bar & a rest. We barely made it to Ward & had some cookies, crackers & Gatorade at the little store there. I was really feeling spent. The last mile into Ward hasn't gotten any easier. The 16 mile ride down wasn't as much fun as usual because I was too tired to enjoy.

    By the time we got home it was about 1:30 and about 92 degrees. A 70 mile round trip. I didn't do much the rest of the day.

    Next time we try this I'm going to make sure I'm well fueled, well electrolyted & well hydrated.

  6. #6
    Cyclist- Bike 'n a half
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ginny
    When ya'll go out for a ride, how many miles do you average?
    We ride almost every Saturday and Sunday, 40+/- miles each day, usually on a club or "other" group ride. We also do most of the "event rides" within driving distance, all of the metric centuries of surrounding clubs and a bunch of charities, and a couple of two or three day tour events and tandem rallies with rides that are usually 40+ to 70-something.

    We don't do full centuries, but might someday if we could complete it in 5 hours or not much more. That's about the limit of time in the saddle before it's not fun anymore for both of us. We've only had a couple of metrics with averages in the low 19's, so we still have room for improvement.

    Last Sunday, we rode on our own in Lake County, 45 min. west of where we live on the east side of Orlando. It’s the closest thing that we have to what you guys call hills. Single riders and triathletes from around the "Sunshine State" (AKA "Flat as a Pancake State") travel here for the challenge of "The Wall", "Buck Hill" and the dreaded 310 foot rise known as "Sugarloaf Mountain" along with a few others.

    Stoker Michele was never interested in riding there when she heard all of the "oh it's so steep I thought I was gonna die" type tales from too many single riders. After we came back from the TN Tandem Rally she had a completely different attitude. We motored right up, even if the speed was rather slow and there were a few captain induced shifting glitches

    Thanks TTR organizers and fellow participants for helping us over our "hillaphobia". We’ll look forward to seeing you, and you’ll probably see us (in your rear view mirror) at STR in Chattanooga.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    We live about 2 miles from Missouri's 220 mile long Katy trail. A common ride for my wife and me is to ride out on the trail until we're halfway tired, turn around and ride home. The trick, of course, is knowing when you're halfway tired.

  8. #8
    Senior Member ken cummings's Avatar
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    With my wife or one of my blind friends we will do 8 to 10 miles. Due to the extreme fitness differences I have to provide most of the power so I stay on flat bike paths or flat rural roads.
    This space open

  9. #9
    Down 10# and 11 inches Ginny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by twilkins9076
    We've only had our tandem on a Multi-use trail one time, and we both hated it. It was part of a group tour across Illinois last fall, and the few miles on the trail were nerve wracking, at best. Too many tight turns, people, dogs, and kids. Give us an open road any day, and we'll be much happier.

    Your wagging feeling could have been due to a relatively low speed. You didn't indicate how fast you were were going, but there's no doubt that these big bikes handle best at a reasonable speed. I know we always feel tipsy when we're doing our usual morning half-way point turnaround in the road. It's a challenge to get the bike headed the other way without falling over or taking to the ditch.

    Glad you're having fun!
    Tom showed me just how nimble and in control he is on a bike. There were a few times when we had to go really slow around kids on bikes, one in each lane, standing still. The second was a family unsure of where they needed to be on the trail with a bike coming the other direction-FAST! We got around everyone and he didn't yell at anyone. I'd have yelled at them all for not paying attention to the rules.


    And the wagging here is actually at higher speeds. Not at all at lower speeds which tells me it's got to be because of Tom's wagging bum.
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    Ginny in Denver
    05 Specialized Sirrus Comp (Mine)
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  10. #10
    Down 10# and 11 inches Ginny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldacura
    Ginny - you say you live in Denver-ish - don't know exactly where that is.

    There is a ride that Lisa & I do about once/year - usually in the fall when the cottonwoods are changing. Basically, you can do a big loop around Denver on the Platte River bikeway, the Cherry Creek bikeway & the Highline Canal trail. We often start at Confluence Park (the confluence of the Platte & Cherry Creek) but you can start & end anywhere along the route. The amazing thing is that it does a 60 mile loop around Denver, there are virtually no hills & there is only 1 very short section where you ride with traffic (near the intersection of Hampden & Colorado Boulevard). We usually ride without helmets! (there, I've confessed). The scenery is varied & interesting - from the very industrial sections along the Platte to the very upscale neighborhoods in Cherry Hills. You can also ride any section of this as an out & back. There are several departures from the route where you can get food & drink. Much of the Highline Canal Trail is hard-packed dirt but you can easily ride with skinny, hard tires at 10 - 15 mph or so.

    Anyway, it's a great ride. Let me know if you want more info on the route.
    I'm in Littleton and we do that ride a couples time a year on the singles. We start at our house, Bear Creak to Platte to Cherry Creek to Highline to 470/Columbine trail to Kipling and up Kipling to our house at Kip & Belleview. We stopped for lunch at a restaurant once last year. 67 miles for us.
    We'll have to do that one in August, lots less time now than we used to have.
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    Ginny in Denver
    05 Specialized Sirrus Comp (Mine)
    04 Jamis Nova Cyclocross (His)
    05 CoMotion Primera Tandem (Ours)

  11. #11
    Senior Member zonatandem's Avatar
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    We don't usually ride MUPs or bike trails, although there are a few good ones.
    Being 'old' and retired, we spend our summers usually 'someplace else' than warm Tucson.
    Outside of Duluth, MN we used to ride the Munger Tral; 70 miles long on old RR right of way. Once you got out of town, or on weekdays, we pretty well had it to ourselves. Weekends . . . naaah . . roller bladers, dogs on those long leashes, etc.
    Currently spending 3 months in Twin Falls,Idaho; got in a nice 23-mile tandem toot today on backroads by lots of farms/fields and also some highway riding. Snow still on the mountains about 80 miles away . . . nice!
    We average 'bout 5 days a week on the tandem, usually 20 or + miles depending on how things go.
    This weekend we ride our tandem as Bike Patrol for the local Tour de Cure. As Bike Patrol, we ride the event and help out cyclists with mechanical/physical/mental issues . . . flats, dropped chains, cramps and minor accidents. The mental help is usually encouraging folks who are lagging or have a bit of a tough time and exchanging pleasantries or just saying: 'hey, you're doing great!'
    Do ride my single racing bike at least once a week . . .
    Our centuries and double century days are now history, by hey, we did 'em!
    Growin' old is not for sisses!
    Pedal on TWOgether!
    Rudy nd Kay/zonatandem

  12. #12
    Down 10# and 11 inches Ginny's Avatar
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    Kay,
    I want to be just like you when I grow up. You and Rudy are awesome.
    When you're in my area, promise you'll give me a holler!
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    Ginny in Denver
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  13. #13
    Senior Member zonatandem's Avatar
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    Ginny:
    We ain't growed up yet!
    Sounds like your tandem has been a good investment . . . enjoy!!!
    Pedal on TWOgether!
    Rudy and Kay/zonatandem

  14. #14
    Senior Member stokessd's Avatar
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    The wife and I are pretty new to owning a tandem. We go on rides greater than 20 miles and typically less than 50. But the terrain here is insanely flat and boring. We have a total elevation change of about 60 feet in a 20 mile circuit. What we lack in terrain, we make up for in deserted roads, and enjoyable heartland scenery. Sometimes we ride about 2 miles to the local frozen custard stand, but that's just fun on the bike, and not a "ride"

    Sheldon

  15. #15
    Co-Motioner
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    Hills in Florida

    Regomatic:

    I never believed there were hills in Central FL until we were down there for the Mt. Dora Ride - Sugarloaf is as tough as we have in MI! We usually come down each year for Mt. Dora and see very few tandems - we'll be there this year with our Co-Motion Supremo (blue - magenta fade) so look out for us.

    Dave and Judy

  16. #16
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    Did you both notice the "wagging"? Or was it just you? Did it happen when it was Tom2?

    Agreed it probably is peddling style, the fact that it "went away" or got better.

    I just want to remind you that there MAY be a mechanical component since it sounds like you have some experience on the back of this tandem so you have something to compare it to. My non-mechanical self thinks it is not likely mechanical as it got better, I would expect it to get worse if it was mechanical.

    So, just pay attention, and particularly talk it over with your captain. If it is him, maybe he can do something about it.
    NewbieIATandem
    Big Team on Trek T900

  17. #17
    Senior Member
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    "Single riders and triathletes from around the "Sunshine State" (AKA "Flat as a Pancake State") travel here for the challenge of "The Wall", "Buck Hill" and the dreaded 310 foot rise known as "Sugarloaf Mountain" along with a few others."

    Regomatic - I often wonder what it would be like to ride where extreme gears would be unneccessary. Our 8 speed Co-Motion goes from 32/32 to 53/11 and we use 'em all. The downside is that jumps between gears are pretty big. We probably don't "need" the 53/11 but its a lot of fun when we want to drop singles on the downhills.

    What range of gears do you run? Do you ever use the extremes?

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by stokessd
    But the terrain here is insanely flat and boring. We have a total elevation change of about 60 feet in a 20 mile circuit.
    Is that 60' rise from the overpasses , lol.

    A cyclist buddy of mine moved from Seattle to Indiana for school and wrote about the flatness. It took him a little while to adjust.

  19. #19
    Cyclist- Bike 'n a half
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldacura
    Regomatic - I often wonder what it would be like to ride where extreme gears would be unneccessary. Our 8 speed Co-Motion goes from 32/32 to 53/11 and we use 'em all. The downside is that jumps between gears are pretty big. We probably don't "need" the 53/11 but its a lot of fun when we want to drop singles on the downhills.

    What range of gears do you run? Do you ever use the extremes?
    We usually run 53-39-30 in the front have 9 sp 12-27 in the back. We don't even need the small ring for 95% of our local rides but when we went to the TN Tandem Rally we put a 26T "Granny Gear" on the front and were darned glad to have it. I didn't take a poll but I think there were at least a few there with even lower ratios than we had.

    Anyways, the rest of the team and “lovely cycling partner” has gotten over her "fear of heights" and we even attracted a compliment on the cycling reporter’s blog at our local paper;

    http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/sports_thechaingang/

    Scroll down to the part about “The Hills Are Alive".

  20. #20
    Senior Member stokessd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by masiman
    Is that 60' rise from the overpasses , lol.

    A cyclist buddy of mine moved from Seattle to Indiana for school and wrote about the flatness. It took him a little while to adjust.

    Yup, and to get the whole 60 feet you have to ride up the basement stairs...

    Sheldon

  21. #21
    kwginco
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    Group Rides in Denver area?

    Hi Ginny,
    My wife and I have been riding tandem for a little over a year now, mostly on our own. We are located in Colorado Springs and have been looking for some casual group rides to meet up with other teams. Seeing your from the Denver-ish area I was wondering if you know of any rides in the Denver area. Thanks.

  22. #22
    Senior Member
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    We used to go for 50 mile rides regularly when we got the tandem, then a new daughter took us back to 5 loops of the local park (6 miles) with her in the trailer. I recently built a tandem rack for the car so that we can take it all over to the in-laws house so I'm looking forward to building back up again. Great thing about cycling and tandemming is that you can enjoy it at whatever level that suits you.

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